All the way back in my initial blog post, I spoke of standing at a career crossroads and how it can be one of the most paralyzing feelings one could ever face. Without completely repeating myself, I talked about how I could continue with my legislative work at the cost of my solo practice, or I could go back to my law office and put the legislative work aside for now.
In the half year that I’ve been blogging for Generation J.D., I’ve written about many different topics and have had the time to consider that decision I knew I would have to make. I think it was the post about “The perils of youth for attorneys” that gave me the little nudge I needed to make my decision.
You see, when I’m in Annapolis writing about the potential minimum wage hike or the 2014 gubernatorial election, nobody cares how old I am. The words I put to paper could just as easily be written by an 80-year-old person with a lifetime of political experience. As long as the words are correct and they make a valid argument, it doesn’t matter who the author is.
That is the primary reason why I’ve decided to hit the pause button on my solo practice and spend more time focusing on my legislative work.
And you know what? The great thing about this decision is that it truly is just a “pause.” It’s not a stop or a reset. I don’t have to go completely back to the drawing board should I want to return to solo practice again in the future. Everything I’ve learned so far about opening my own law office will still be valid down the road. I’m not going to forget all that just because I’m working more in Annapolis now.
In addition, all the contacts I have made over the years aren’t simply going to disappear. Granted, people will change jobs or move away, but that’s to be expected with any career. In fact, since law and politics are so closely entwined, the people I encounter while working in Annapolis could easily prove just as valuable to me as other lawyers or judges if I switch back to focusing on my solo practice.
I hope by doing this that I will not only be able to expand upon the viability of another branch along my career path, but that I will also be able to use it to help prop up the law office, if and when I go back down that path. Starting any kind of business requires a great deal of capital up front—something I did not have when I just passed the bar exam. Having a constant source of income from my legislative work will make it much easier when trying to survive month-to-month until I can build up my client base enough to replace those funds.
I also hope that, by sharing this decision and my reasoning behind it with all of you, you may find yourself better equipped to make that decision if you eventually have to do the same.
So, yes, while I have decided to pause this side of my professional life, know that I am only switching out this game with a similar one; I’m not returning the original. I know that it will be right there on the shelf waiting for me if I ever choose to put it back in. If that happens, like last time I’ll be sure to let you all know.